OK ... anyone else out there, at some point in their lives (hopefully earlier than later) want to/dream of joining the circus?
No? Just me then? I figures.
There was always this draw from me, when it came to the circus. Even back in the mid-1970s, there weren't a lot of amusement parks. And if you didn't live relatively close to one, odds are you didn't get to go, or at least not that often. Even the state fairs are usually held in one location. Getting there could mean a very long drive.
But the circus? The circus came to your town for a week or two. They set up these huge tents and had all these acts and games and food. In smaller towns, with smaller circuses, they would usually announce their presence with a parade through the town's version of main street. You would get a sneak peek at all they had to offer. And who doesn't love a parade? Well, I guess there are some ... I didn't like the ones I had to march in, for one reason or another. LOL
Then there was the bugging of the parents to take you to the circus. You'd pester and pester and finally they'd agree to take you, if you were lucky.
And then you were there ... in the bleachers underneath the big top, with the crowds and the popcorn and cotton candy and circus music. The ringmaster would come out and welcome all of you and announce the acts.
He'd always be dressed up in some gaudy version of a tuxedo, usually with a screamingly bright jacket and a top hat. He'd often have a riding crop or a baton. I always loved that outfit, and lament that I didn't wear some facsimile of the costume to my high school prom. LOL
And there were always so many cool and amazing acts. The lion tamer, the elephants, the horses with people jumping on and off them. The high wire act, the daring young people on the flying trapeze, in their glittering outfits, sometimes working without a net. And the clowns! How do they get so many into those tiny little cars?
But I have to admit that what I liked the most was the sideshow -- the freaks and geeks. When I was about 7 or 8, I'd check out books at the public library about the circus, especially Barnum & Bailey's, the creme de la creme of circuses. I never got to see a dogboy or a mustachioed/bearded lady, but there were also some interesting sterotypical acts.
As for me ... I wanted to be a circus strongman. I wanted to lift impossibly heavy objects over my head -- giant barbells that would bend because the weights at each end were insanely heavy. Or the bending of those thick steel bars using the power of heaving, bulging arms. Or lifting a woman sitting in a chair overhead with one arm.
Of course, I'd simply HAVE to have the leopard skin, one strap outfit. That's a given. I'm lucky that my head looks good shaved, because that's another part of the look that's needed, in my book. Unfortunately, I'd never be able to grow one of those curving, handlebar mustaches. *sigh*
And now, strongmen aren't in circuses -- they're on ESPN2, competing against each other by pulling tractor trailer trucks, lifting cars repeatedly, walking while carrying giant anchors, placing Atlas stones on pedastals.
And there aren't hardly any traveling circuses any longer. Thanks to the French circus people, now everyone's enamored with Cirque du Soleil and their Vegas shows.
Oh well ... anyone want to join DZER's Cirque du Blog? I will be taking the strongman position, and will also double as ringmaster. But that leaves plenty of openings. What circus act do you want to take on?